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by Devin Lee Fuller
April 9, 2012 11:19 AM
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Inaugural Montclair Film Festival to Open with 'The Oranges' Starring Catherine Keener

Julian Farino's "The Oranges" will open the Montclair Film Festival.

The Montclair Film Festival (May 1-6) has announced its inaugural line-up for 2012. The festival will open with Julian Farino's New Jersey-set "The Oranges" starring Hugh Laurie, Catherine Keener and Oliver Platt.

Forty-five films will screen at the festival with special guests including Kathleen Turner, Olympia Dukakis, Michael Moore, Patrick Wilson and Oliver Platt.

Festival co-founder Bob Feinberg set out two years ago to bring a film festival to New Jersey, and he is excited to see his efforts come to fruition.

“We’ve rallied supporters from the film community, from the philanthropic community and from the civic community,” said Feinberg. “During the first week in May, we’ll see the results of these efforts. Based on the outpouring of support, I’m confident that it’s going to be a great week for all involved.”

A complete lineup can be found HERE.

Press release below:

MONTCLAIR FILM FESTIVAL ANNOUNCES INAUGURAL LINE-UP MAY 1-6, 2012

FESTIVAL OPENS WITH SPECIAL SCREENING OF NEW JERSEY COMEDY, THE ORANGES, AND CELEBRATES NEW JERSEY TALENT INCLUDING JUDY BLUME, CHRIS ROCK, PAT CLEVELAND AND OTHERS

LIVE PARTICIPATION BY KATHLEEN TURNER, OLYMPIA DUKAKIS, MICHAEL MOORE, PATRICK WILSON AND OLIVER PLATT

Montclair, NJ – April 9, 2012: The Montclair Film Festival, held in Montclair New Jersey, announced its inaugural line-up today. The festival takes place May 1-6, 2012 and features over 45 films with live participation by special guests including Kathleen Turner, Olympia Dukakis, Michael Moore, Patrick Wilson and Oliver Platt.

Bob Feinberg, the co-founder and chairman of the project, set out to create a film festival for the town of Montclair that would serve as a focal point for the cinematic arts, an economic engine and an expression of cultural and artistic diversity. Two years later, the idea has become a reality: New Jersey is home to a first-class film festival. “We’ve rallied supporters from the film community, from the philanthropic community, and from the civic community,” said Feinberg. “During the first week in May, we’ll see the results of these efforts. Based on the outpouring of support, I’m confident that it’s going to be a great week for all involved.”

Festival directors Raphaela Neihausen and Thom Powers selected films from around the world while paying special attention to New Jersey talent. “The heart of filmmaking beats strongly in Jersey,” said Neihausen. “It’s astonishing when you realize how many talented people were born here or now call the state home.”

“We sought to curate a selection that plays to the strengths of Montclair,” said Powers. “That includes a comedy section, a strong interest in African-American stories and an engagement with progressive issues.”

In the planning stages for over two years, the board of advisors includes comedian Stephen Colbert, journalist Adaora Udoji, cosmetics CEO Bobbi Brown and President of National Geographic Films, Daniel Battsek.

Highlights of festival sections include:

Special Presentations: The Opening Night Gala (May 1) will present the New Jersey comedy, The Oranges, with a strong ensemble cast including Hugh Laurie, Leighton Meester, and Oliver Platt. The Oranges will open this fall. A “Tribute to Kathleen Turner” (May 2) will survey the actress’ career with a live interview. (Her newest film The Perfect Family plays separately at MFF). Olympia Dukakis will appear for a screening of her latest film Cloudburst (May 3).

Drama: Tiger Eyes, based on the novel by New Jersey native Judy Blume (the first of her books to be adapted for the big screen), is directed by her son Lawrence Blume. An Oversimplification of Her Beauty is the bold debut of African-American director Terence Nance.

Comedy: “The What-Is-It,” a live event with comedians from The Daily Show with Jon Stewart. NJ resident Chris Rock stars in 2 Days in New York.

Documentary: World Premiere of The Prep School Negro. A Screening of About Face, a documentary by Timothy Greenfield-Sanders, plus a Q&A with Pat Cleveland.

Family: Brooklyn Castle and First Position, films that challenge preconceptions of chess and ballet.

New Jersey Spotlight: World Premiere of David Bromberg: Unsung Treasure and Evocateur:The Morton Downey Jr Movie. Rare theatrical screening of The Promise: The Making of the Darkness on the Edge of Town, plus a Q&A with director Thom Zimny.

Classics: Oscar-winning editor Thelma Schoonmaker Powell appears in- person to present a restoration of the 1948 film, The Red Shoes, co-directed by her late husband, Michael Powell, with Emeric Pressburger. The festival also shows a restored version of the 1933 original King Kong.

Conversations: “The Road to Batman & Dark Knight”, a discussion with Michael Uslan and Steve Gorelick, executive director of the New Jersey Motion Picture & Television Commission. A conversation with acclaimed actor and NJ resident Patrick Wilson and a panel on film and community building with Michael Moore.

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